GRANDJEAN, IDAHO — If you're thinking about a trip to the Sawtooths, but are looking for an inexpensive and rustic alternative to Stanley, you might just want to take a right before Banner Summit and head down an Idaho backroad that leads to GrandJean.
Todd Abbott and his family have been visiting there for decades.
"I think what's cool about this place is the fact that it hasn't changed since I was a boy," said Abbott. "It's pretty much how I remember it. The pool is exactly the same. The cabins still have the same feel to 'em."
The family loves the outdoor experience, complete with cooking their own catch over an open flame, but Mom likes the fact that she can get that experience without pitching a tent.
At Sawtooth Lodge the beds are in rustic cabins, some with a bath and shower, and some without. Each one has a wood burning stove and electricity is available until 11:00 pm.
But don't count on using your cell phone in Grandjean. There is no service. That's just fine with Dave Martin, who can't seem to tear himself away from this area.
"Right now I'm on a month-long camping trip," said Martin. "I'm retired and I was going to do the panhandle--I can't get away from the Sawtooths. It's just unbelievable."
He also likes the fact that you can still rent a cabin here for less than $100.
"I've talked to people who said, 'I couldn't get in over at Redfish for $300 a night, but I got in here,' and they were happy."
But the cabins aren't the only option in Grandjean.
"They have a meadow that you can do camping in, or you can just come for the day," said Abbott. "There are campgrounds that are nearby."
There's a geothermal pool, but on Tuesdays they change the water. Whether the pool is open or closed you can still enjoy the soothing water at nearby Sacajawea Hot Springs.